Do you LOVE One Direction? Is this an obvious question? We all should know the answer. We can hear you screaming YES!
We saw the 1D Fandom growing and becoming stronger during those (almost) five years. Directioners have helped the boys, YOUR boys in their achievements by being the most devoted fandom EVER- voting for awards, requesting songs to radio stations, breaking records at concerts and only you know how much you have done!
The fanbase is mixed; their diversity involves all possible aspects of life, including beliefs and ideals. Being the fanbase is so diverse, opinions are bound to largely differ from one fan to the other, often causing discussions on social media. The problem with discussions is that, more often than not, they are not respectful, or expressed in a unhealthy way, angry and crossing the bullying line. All this can become dangerous. Sadly, the angriest discussions often involve the private lives of the boys.
In January 2015, four fans came together to start a new kind of One Direction update account. One focused only on the music and professional endeavours of the group, while calling for respect of the boys’ private lives as well as for respecting all other fans and actively trying to promote building a better and stronger fandom – one free of bullying. Hence #1DFansStandAgainstBullying was born.
On January 3rd 2015 those four amazing fans created the @OneDirectionNDA account, with now over 40k followers. A great indication of how much an account like their was needed.
They have received a huge amount of support from the fans who feel safe and heard when they are interacting with them and each other on @OneDirectionNDA.
“We also feel that our account brings back into focus what brought most of us together: the music!” JG, one of the founders said.
Below are the stories of what inspired those brave fans to start @OneDirectionNDA.
“I had been following one direction for a while when I created my personal fan twitter account. I was immediately struck by the passion of the fandom on twitter but also by some troublesome behaviours including poor respect of the boys’ private lives, families and friends, as well as poor respect for each other exhibited by the fans. I often observed bullying towards fans and the boys, and I was a few times a victim of bullying myself. Strikingly, bullying came often from groups that proclaimed to stand for unity within the fandom. In the last few months I found myself interacting more and more with the other 3 administrators of @OneDirectionNDA, finding that we shared exactly the same views of wanting a better place to love One Direction’s music. On a Twitter exchange that will go down in history, we decided to create @OneDirectionNDA. All 4 of us had been using the #1DFansStandAgainstBullying in our tweets on our personal accounts, so we started to use it on @OneDirectionNDA as well. Shortly after, we came up with the idea of the logo against bullying that we added to the icon picture and that is now on some of the fans’ icons. The logo idea came from the “brightness” key of the keyboard, since we are hoping to brighten the fandom, twitter and the internet in general. We are so happy for the support we are receiving which we believe speaks volumes of what fans have been craving for. But even more importantly, we are happy to have created a positive place where everybody is welcome.” YM
“As a fan of One Direction, I had always been struck by the amount of anger that exists within the fandom- to other fans, the band members, and their family and friends. Differences of opinion seemed to be not allowed, and many of the fan accounts focused more on the private lives of the band members than the music. After being caught up in that side of the fandom, I noticed that some of the fans had begun to develop platforms to create unity while scolding others for disagreeing with their point of view. This seemed counter-intuitive and it was then that I decided I needed to change my own stance as a fan. This led to me meeting a group of 3 other great individuals who shared like thoughts, and it was as a group that we decided to start the #1DFansStandAgainstBullying campaign and the @OneDirectionNDA account.” JG
“For as long as I have been a fan of One Direction, the fans treatment of each other has been horrid to witness. Most big accounts in the fandom have little respect for the band, their families and friends, not to mention other fans. They think nothing of sending hateful messages to each other and think it’s cool and that what they say doesn’t affect people because it’s only words on a screen. This isn’t true and is why we came up with #1DFansStandAgainstBullying. I met my lovely 3 admins and we all shared similar views. We wanted to take it back to what it was about- the music. We wanted to be respectful of the boys and their families and we wanted to show fans that a fan is a fan regardless of their age, gender or sexuality. It’s about the music. So we started @OneDirectionNDA.” CL
“Being a part of NDA has been very rewarding for me. I became a fan of One Direction nearly from the start and have watched their fan base grow and change over the years. There are many very positive things their fans have done for the band by voting on awards, raising money for charities, and getting the word out for fan projects before a concert or event. But there has always been inappropriate behaviour such as tweeting horrible remarks to each other or to the boys’ families and friends, posting private pictures, and even where some update accounts seemed to promote stalking of the band by posting their whereabouts when traveling or posting private things about the band when they are on break. So, we 4 came together to change some of that. @OneDirectionNDA provides a safe environment for fans to interact about the music. I have had the experience through our account to hear firsthand, how much the fans enjoy having a safe, bully-free place to chat. In just two short months, @OneDirectionNDA has grown to over 16,000 followers, which is a great indication of how much an account like ours was needed. There have been remarks sent to us about how the #1DFansStandAgainstBullying campaign has helped them stand up for themselves with knowing we had their back. They have taken this initiative we started with that hashtag and applied it to their lives in school. This is just one example of the very many we hear about how @OneDirectionNDA is turning the One Direction fandom around to being a powerful, positive place that can make a difference in eliminating cyber-bullying. @OneDirectionNDA also reminds us why we all became fans in the first place, which is to enjoy the music. For all these reasons I am so proud to be a part @OneDirectionNDA.“ MP
The @OneDirectionNDA account currently has over 40 thousand followers! If you want to join us and @OneDirectionNDA in standing against the bullying share some positive digital love following them and spreading the #1DFansStandAgainstBullying campaign.